Friday, March 25, 2011

Organic Bytes: Rallies for the Right to Know



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Rallies for the Right to Know

#269, March 24, 2011

In this issue:



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Video of the Week

Millions Against Monsanto

This is the first OCA Millions Against Monsanto Campaign video that we've created in-house. Look for more videos from OCA in the future! Visit our YouTube channel, too.



Excerpt of the Week

Fifty-Three Percent of U.S. Backyard Gardeners Growing Vegetables

A nationwide survey indicates that spending for vegetables and fruits grown in household gardens now surpasses spending for lawns, trees, shrubs - and even flowers. The same survey unearthed the following trends among gardeners:
53% grow vegetables in their gardens
90% plan to eat the produce fresh
66% will share with friends
36% will can or preserve produce
4% will donate food to others

Another survey, this one by the National Gardening Association, looked at the main reasons people grow food in their gardens:
58% desire better tasting food
54% want to save money on food bills
51% want better quality food
48% want to grow food they know is safe

--"Calling All Gardeners," by Jennifer Nelson, M.S., R.D. and Katherine Zeratsky, R.D., March 23, 2011,

Learn More



Millions Against Monsanto Fundraising Appeal

A quarter of a million people have already signed up as participants and supporters in our Millions Against Monsanto Truth-in-Labeling Campaign. But we need money to print leaflets, to buy hundreds of copies of the video "The World According to Monsanto," to print up T-shirts and bumper stickers, and to pay our campaign staff. As you know, GMOs, Factory Farms, and deceptively labeled consumer products pose a mortal threat to public health, climate stability, and all living things. As we speak, organic crops are being contaminated with Monsanto's GMOs. We need your financial contributions to educate and mobilize consumers, to protect and maintain strict organic standards, and to pressure the entire food industry, including natural food stores and co-ops, to adopt Truth-in-Labeling practices.

Please Donate



Stop Genetically Engineered Apples!

Okanagan Specialty Fruits Inc., Summerland, B.C., is seeking USDA and FDA approval for its Arctic Golden Delicious and Granny Smith apples in which genes causing browning have been switched off.

The U.S. apple industry is asking USDA not to allow these genetically engineered, non-browning apples from Canada to be produced in the United States. The U.S. Apple Association voted unanimously at a March 12 board meeting to oppose the Okanagan Specialty Fruits application.

The Northwest Horticulture Council is also trying to stop GM apples. Chris Schlect, president of the Northwest Horticulture Council sent a letter to U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on Feb. 28 expressing the council's opposition to the Okanagan application. Schlect explained in the letter that the Northwest Horticulture Council "anticipate[s] severe adverse marketing issues to confront both organic and traditional apple growers should [GM apples] be allowed into the general marketplace."

The council explained its stance in the March edition of its newsletter:

"This policy decision was made by our trustees after a careful balance, taking into account potential customer concerns, of benefits and risks to the existing commercial apple industry of the Pacific Northwest," the newsletter states. "In the end, the projected benefits of the non-browning apples did not outweigh the marketing harm likely to occur to apple growers and marketers, whether traditional or organic."

Speaking with the Capital Ag Press, Schlect said the industry is concerned that negative public perception of genetically engineered products could hurt apple sales.

"It's purely an economic thing. The negatives outweigh the positives," he said.

In this case, he said, there are issues of product labeling, possible cross-contamination, potential export market barriers and general consumer concern.

The U.S. apple industry isn't opposed to genetic engineering, but they will oppose GMO apples as long as they believe that consumers will reject them. We must use this opportunity to send a strong message to President Obama, Sec. Vilsack and APHIS Aministrator Cindy Smith that consumers are against GMO apples.

Take Action



This Saturday, March 26, 2011: Millions Against Monsanto Rally for the Right to Know About GMOs in Our Food!

Thanks to a trio of hard-working, all-volunteer Millions Against Monsanto organizers, Trish Wright, Erica Gray and April Reeves (along with local organizers), Rallies for the Right to Know are happening in more than 20 locations across the country this Saturday, March 26, 2011.

Learn More

Queen Creek, AZ - 9:00am – 3:00pm, Canyon State Academy 20061 E Rittenhouse Rd.

Chico, CA - 11:00am - 3:00pm, Downtown "Park" between Broadway and Main Streets (where the fountains are)(3 blocks from FOOD CO-OP)

Los Angeles, CA - 11:00am - 2:00pm, Los Angeles (Westwood) Federal Building, 11000 Wilshire Blvd.

Red Bluff, CA - 11:00am - 3:00pm, the corner of Antelope and Main St.

Colorado Springs, CO - 11:00am - 1:30pm, Acacia Park

Washington, DC - 11:00am - 3:00pm, The White House Sidewalk, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue

Hollywood Beach, FL - 11:00am - 2:00pm, Johnson Street Theatre, Johnson Street/N. Ocean Drive/A1A

Tampa Bay, FL - 11:00am - 3:00pm, Honda Grand Prix and area farmers market

Atlanta, GA - 11:00am - 4:00pm, Around Centennial Olympic Park across from the CNN Bldg

Maui, HI - 8:00am - 11:00am, in front of Long's street-side on Ka'ahumanu Ave in Kahului, Maui

Indianapolis, IN - 12:00pm - 3:00pm, 200 W. Washington Street #220

Ann Arbor, MI - 12:00pm - 3:00pm, Southeast corner of Catherine Street and N. 4th Avenue - just south of the A2 Farmers Market and Kerrytown Shops

St. Paul, MN - 12:00pm - 2:00pm, Minnesota State Capitol Building - South Mall, 75 Rev Dr. Martin Luther King Jr Blvd, 55155

Kansas City, MO - 11:00am - 3:00pm, The Plaza

New York, NY - 12:00pm - 1:00pm, City Hall steps New York City, Between Broadway and Park Row

Albuquerque, NM - 12:00pm - 3:00pm, UNM

Salem, OR - 12:00pm - 3:00pm, 900 Court St. NE

Nashville, TN - 10:00am - 1:00pm, Nashville Farmers Market, 900 Rosa Parks Boulevard (8th Avenue North)

Austin, TX - 12:00pm - 3:00pm, The Capitol Building

Montpelier, VT - 11:00am - 3:00pm, Outside City Hall

Seattle, WA - 12:00pm - 2:00pm, Victor Steinbrueck Park, 2001 Western Avenue (by Pike Place Market)

Milwaukee, WI - 11:00am - 2:00pm, Water and Wisconsin

Don't see a Rally for the Right to Know in your area? Organize your own picket line or rally on Saturday, or pick a date that's good for you, even if it's just taking a clipboard and petition, a homemade sign and some fliers to your local grocery store. Here's what you need:

1. The Millions Against Monsanto petition (PDF)

2. GMO Consumer Warning Leaflet

3. Post your event to the Rally for the Right to Know Facebook page and/or send the info about your event to our Truth-In-Labeling Campaign organizers so we can post it to the Millions Against Monsanto page.

4. Tell the media.

Find media contacts here. And here are Press Releases to use as an example.

5. After the event, share your photos & video.

Post photos to the Millions Against Monsanto Activist Photo Album.

Check out the Activist Photo Album.

Click here, find your local Facebook Chapter, and upload your pics and videos!

Contact OrganicConsumer on YouTube and we'll put your video in our "Favorites." OrganicConsumer on YouTube



Remember to Take Action...

Ban Triclosan! Take action by April 8, 2011

New York: Label Milk From Cows Given rBGH (Genetically Engineered Bovine Growth Hormone)!

California: Label GM Salmon!

Hawaii: Demand Truth-in-Labeling! 

Alaska: Stop GMO Salmon!


Little Bytes

Is the Environment Poisoning Our Children? By Sandra Steingraber

Author Michael Pollan Explains the War on Food Movement

Think Tainted Chinese Pork is Scary? Check Out the Nearest Supermarket Meat Case

Farmers and Consumer Groups File Lawsuit Challenging Genetically Engineered Alfalfa Approval

New Ways of Living and Organizing Our Economy are Flourishing



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